Archive: January, 2007


Hey, apparently some people DO support me in my bid for city council! Come to find out, I will have some support to get signage, fliers, and a few other promotional items. It’s hardly news to anyone but me, and I don’t have the large budget of the other candidates, but at least I won’t be completely un-advertised.

I hate to call it advertising, but that’s what it is at this point. Guys putting up signs and handing out matchbooks.

Jaycee Week – The Wrap-up

Wow. That was just amazing. For the past week we Jaycees have been busting our humps to get an event-per-day done in celebration of Jaycee Week. Mayor Keen proclaimed Jaycee Week in Mount Vernon with us in his office on the Friday before we started. From there, we hit the ground running.

Sunday morning we arrived at VCC in Mount Vernon to attend their morning service. We were treated to their modern praise and worship. The message that day was from Don Tucker who had recently been to India visiting sponsored libraries in the regions.

Monday evening several of us gathered at the clubhouse to assemble care packages to help ease the lives of people living in India. We included basic staples we take for granted daily, such as: soaps, hair care supplies, and miscellaneous other items. For the children, we also included balloons, coloring books, and crayons. These will return to India with Mr. Tucker from VCC in the near future.

Tuesday evening was a relaxed night of socializing. We had pizza and discussed what being a Jaycee has meant to previous presidents Bill Schulte, Rick Hobbs, and had an email on the subject from Dave Davenport. Everyone enjoyed hearing about previous Jaycee successes and some antics the “old-timers” had pulled during their time.

Wednesday we arranged for Mayor Keen to meet with the MVTHS Youth and Government delegation to discuss politics. I was a few minutes late, but from what I could see, the students had many questions for the mayor and enjoyed having him present.

Thursday we had a movie night at Countryside Manor. We brought cookies, pretzels, popcorn, and various pop for the residents to enjoy during “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”. An approximate turnout of 25 joined us in the activities room to watch the show and have some snacks. On a personal note, Audrey Hepburn was a fox. I had no idea until I sat down and watched that movie.

Friday we held a cookout at Kroger to help benefit the local Fraternal Order of Police. This was the first time we had advertised AND the first time we offered delivery. We were wholly unprepared for all the orders and customers. I apologize for anyone who was unable to get through on our delivery hotline, but we were unable to answer all of the calls. To say this cookout was a smashing success is no where near enough.

Saturday evening was an M-night at the clubhouse to wrap-up the week’s events. I was unable to attend as I took Em to STL for her birthday. From what I am told the billiard tournament and M-night were fun for everyone.

That’s my synopsis. I hope everyone had as much fun as I did putting everything on for the community.

MY meeting with the mayor

After the Jaycees got the photo and had finished talking to Mr. Keen, he asked me to wait around and chat with him. Of course, I did. Let me say that Dave is a very nice person and very positive to talk to in person.

One of the subjects we discussed was an item that had infuriated me previously – MVFD coming below Parks on the city’s budget. I will now have to eat crow and say that when I looked at the city’s budget, the MVFD was ~3x the amount of the parks budget. So on that point, I concede unless someone can show me evidence to the contrary. I still maintain that the MVFD was not treated fairly in a conflict with LAS last year, judging by conversations with several of the firemen.

The next major point that we covered was the growth, or lack thereof of the city. I will agree that the westward overpass and other street development will open up a lot of area for development and hopefully get the city moving. Unfortunately, until real employment shows up, I still have my doubts as to the ability of our current administration to guide the city.

I will be positive in these facts though: NAPA’s distribution center, Crossroads growth, and several other items that have been small but a positive impact on our city. I must say that the Mayor did shed some light for me on positive things that I had not had in the forefront of my mind.

Another thing that had bothered me recently was the landscaping where Broadway and Main split/join in front of Ford Square. I questioned the use of monies on such projects when the site was not some horrible eyesore. However, I was informed by Mr. Keen that the funds for that project, as well as the same sign near the interstate Hardees, were supplied by the state through a grant. That was a small irritance now put to rest.

Overall, I am glad I talked with the Mayor. I am glad he is open and willing to talk to anyone and show the positive potential and plans for our city. I am still watchful of the government, how it spends our money, how it treats us as citizens, and whether they do help us be successful or just talk a big talk.

Thanks for the chat, Dave.

Jaycee Week

January 21-27 is National Jaycee Week, and a group of us met at the Mayor’s office to get a photo and witness the proclamation signing. The Mayor did manage to get us in, despite a hectic schedule.

We all stood behind the Mayor and took a couple of photos so that we can have a few memories. While we were there, the Mayor pointed out the plans for some of the westard expansion that is moving forward. There appears to be a lot of potential in that area for postive expansion and growth.

Thank you Mr. Keen for getting us in and sharing some of the vision of things to come!

Mary Estella – Who knew people from my HS are talented?

I just happened across an article about an old classmate from MVTHS. Apparently she is making a go of a music career. I saw her around a lot, and she was always smiling and nice, but I had no idea she was talented.

I popped over to her website and took a listen to some of the snippets she has available for download. I’m impressed. This may sound cliche, but the stripped-down acoustics and voice on her tracks remind me of Jewel.

If you haven’t heard of her, please check her out at: